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They'll Never Take our Turning Circle

By Rob Last edited 133 months ago
They'll Never Take our Turning Circle
black_taxi.jpg

Yesterday we reported on a debate which had taken place in the House of Lords that included some rather unexpected superlatives regarding the 'iconic' black cab and particularly their "extraordinary and hugely admired limited turning circles".

Now that post got 5 comments, which isn't bad for an article on turning circles. So we did a bit more digging and it turns out our turning circles were under threat!

According to Transport for London a 'conditions of fitness' review was carried out on the black cabs a couple of years ago and one of the main sticking points was the turning circle.

Even more surprising is that it was the car manufacturers who wanted to scrap it:

Allied Vehicles alleged that the retention of the turning-circle requirement led to fewer taxis, higher fares, less suitable taxis for the needs of the disabled and the unavailability of safer and more comfortable taxis, to the disadvantage in general of passengers and drivers alike.

The facts of these alleged disbenefits were not borne out by the research undertaken.

Now get ready, all you turning circle geeks, because here come the stats:

Approximately 50m U-turns and over 90m other tight turns are performed by London taxis each year.

If these U-turns were replaced by multi-point turns and other alternative complex manoeuvres, this could cause delay and impede other road users.

So there you go - case closed, and we've given you something to talk about the next time you get in a cab.

You can thank us later.

Last Updated 16 December 2005

mike

It's the 21st century - shouldn't all cabs come with VTOL as standard by now?

ian

I'm all far the abandonment of the turning circle requirement if it stops cabbies doing random u-turns in front of me with little regard for my safety.